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At 61 Years Old Mike Monahan Still Getting it Done
by Troy Hennig

Marysville, CA (April 22, 2017) – Proving that sprint car racing isn’t just a young lions sport, 61-year-old Mike Monahan of Reno, NV led all 25 laps to win the feature event Saturday night at Marysville Raceway. “I am just lucky to be surrounded by good people,” Monahan said in victory lane alluding to his crew. Monahan got the win but it wasn’t as easy as it might sound. Michael Ing is the epitome of the young and hungry lion. Not only did Ing try everything he could do during the 25 laps to get around Monahan, at one point he even tried passing the No. 49 on two wheels. Ing had a big run to the outside of Monahan in turn two only to see him bicycle up on two wheels and somehow miraculously save it. Ing drove a hard race but ended up second. Jeremy Hawes is having that championship style year. While he hasn’t won yet, but it will come, he is putting together consistent finishes. Tonight, he came home third.

Peter Paulson earned the fastest lap during qualifying when he turned a 12.562. Paulson continued to have a successful night and finished fourth in the 25-lap main event. Colby Wiesz started deep in the field and drove up to a fifth-place finish. Bobby Butler dominated the first hear race for the win. Brad Bumgarner held off Wiesz to capture the win in heat two. Ing made a late race pass for the lead and win heat three. A total of 19 cars entered point race #3.

Phillip Shelby is as good as they get when it comes to IMCA Sport Mods at Marysville. Once again, he ended up in victory lane after the 20-lap main event. “I have to thank all my family, friends and everyone who helps me,” Shelby said in victory lane surrounding by at least 20 people. Tyler Rodgers was the hard charger of the night and came all the way to finish second. Rodgers looked like a real challenger as he continued to improve. Les Friend won his heat race and then went on to finish third. Damian Merritt had a consistent night and finished fourth. Shane Devolder rounded out the top five finish. Devolder did win the first heat race of the night.

Gary Paulson won the lone heat race for the wingless sprint cars. Even though the car count was small, the main event was good with an outstanding three car battle between Terry Schank Jr., Paulson and Spencer. Those three put in a great race. In the end, it was Schank getting the win. Spencer held off Paulson for second.

Buddy Olschowka and Mike Reeder had the best finish of the night. Reeder led the final lap but coming for the checkered the two banged wheels, sparks were flying and these two guys were going for broke. As they raced towards the finish line it was Olschowka who edged Reeder for the win. Olschowka finished second in the B main and should be commended for getting the win after transferring out the semi-feature. Scott Dahlgren was a factor all night and ended up third. Ryan Winter was up front, then stopped and had to restart at the back. He drove back up to a fourth-place finish. Jack Haverty finished in the fifth spot. Early race leader Shawn Jones exited the track with a mechanical issue. He had the car to beat. Danny Wagner and Colby Wiesz were also early favorites to win the race but each retired to the pits during the race. Reeder, Wagner and Wiesz each won their respective heat races. Reeves won the B main event.

Adam Ermolenko won the Economy Winged sprint car race. The race ended on lap nine when the second and third place car crashed in turn one. Jaylon Deas is credited with the second-place finish. Ermolenko also win the lone heat race.